Danny Kaye

Paramount Pictures

Classic Christmas movies have never been my bag. I’ve still not seen It’s a Wonderful Life and I’m iffy on musicals, too. I don’t dislike them or anything, there’s plenty I’ve enjoyed. I just haven’t seen a lot of older ones. But hell, White Christmas is my sister-in-law’s all-time favorite, apparently, so I decided to give it a shot. Here’s what’s weird about White Christmas: It’s oddly modern. By that, I mean it does a lot of things that people decry as the death of Hollywood ideas today. For example, it’s a remake. Specifically, it’s based on Holiday Inn (yes, like the hotel chain — they’re named after the film) which was another Irving Berlin movie and also starred Bing Crosby. That famous song, “White Christmas”? It didn’t even come from this film. It came from Holiday Inn and they just re-used it here and stole its title. And it wasn’t like a small part of that movie. It won the Oscar that year for Best Original Song. If a movie did that today, audiences would freak the hell out. Another thing is that it’s pretty shameless spectacle. It was one of the first films in “VistaVision”, Paramount’s attempt at reintroducing widescreen films to theaters, which hadn’t been seen since before World War II. Bringing back old technology that had already been thrown on the scrap pile in decades past? Cue the eye rolls.

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Every day, come rain or shine or internet tubes breaking, Film School Rejects showcases a trailer from the past. “As he leads his band of midgets against the army of the tyrant king!” Where did movie marketers come up with this stuff? It’s genius. Danny Kaye stars here as the reluctant hero that has to swing from ropes, sword fight while drinking, and remember which vessel or chalice has the poison meant for the pretender to the throne. It might be the best Robin Hood parody made before 1993. Plus, these trailers from the 1950s are always so bright, cheerful and colorful. So great. Think you know what it is? Check the trailer out for yourself:

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oam-whitechristmas

Who cares about Thanksgiving? Just like Corporate America, we’ll be skipping right over it in favor of starting our whirlwind Christmas coverage. Cross your fingers for snow.

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The Court Jester

Every Sunday, Film School Rejects presents a movie that was made before you were born and tells you why you should like it. This week, Old Ass Movies presents: The Court Jester (1955).

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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